Black Bean & Quinoa Burrito Bowl

Black Bean & Quinoa Burrito Bowl

Ingredients:
  • 1  1/2 cups quinoa
  • 1  1/2 cups black beans, canned, rinsed and drained
  • 1  1/2 cups corn, defrosted
  • 1 medium bell pepper, red, seeded and chopped
  • 4 medium scallions, chopped
  • 1 tsp garlic, finely minced
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, fresh, chopped fine
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper, optional
  • 1/3 cup lime juice
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1  1/4 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • salt, to taste
  • pepper, to taste
Directions:

Prep

  1. Rinse quinoa in a fine sieve under cold running water until water runs clear
  2. Put quinoa in a pot with 2¼ cups water, bring to a boil
  3. Cover and simmer 20 minutes or until water is absorbed and quinoa is tender
  4. Fluff quinoa with a fork and transfer to large bowl to cool

Make

  1. Once quinoa has cooled, add beans, corn, bell pepper, scallions, garlic, cilantro, and cayenne (if using)
  2. Toss to combine
  3. In a small bowl whisk together lime juice, salt, cumin and add oil in a stream while whisking
  4. Drizzle over salad and toss well
  5. Add salt and pepper, to taste
Notes

Toss in some fresh greens for added texture and nutrition

How to: Prep a Pineapple + Pineapple Salsa

How to: Prep a Pineapple + Pineapple Salsa

Do you love to eat fresh pineapple, but find prepping it to be a chore? This video is for you! Bonus – a delicious recipe to make using your freshly chopped pineapple. Enjoy!

Pineapple Salsa

Ingredients
  • 2 cups pineapple, fresh
  • 1 bell pepper, red
  • 3 tomatoes, Roma
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, fresh
  • 1/4 cup red onion
  • 1 jalapeño – remove seeds (optional)
  • 2 limes, juiced
  • 1 Tbs olive oil
  • salt to taste
Directions

Prep

  1. Wash and chop all produce according to directions

Make

  1. Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and season to taste with salt
  2. Allow salsa to rest for 20 minutes before serving
Chia Pudding 3 Ways

Chia Pudding 3 Ways

This pudding is quick to assemble and the long process happens while you are sleeping! Wake up and get creative by adding your favorite toppings. Check out our suggestions below.

Ingredients:
  • 1 cup oat milk, unsweetened
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 Tbs maple syrup (or other sweetener)
  • 1/2 cup Greek yogurt, plain & low-fat (or plant-based yogurt)
  • 1/4 cup chia seeds
  • 1/2 cup blueberries
Directions:
  1. Add all ingredients, except berries, to a mason jar with a tight-fitting lid and shake vigorously to combine
  2. Let sit for 10 minutes then shake again to prevent chia seed from settling to bottom
  3. Place in refrigerator for at least 4 hours or overnight
  4. Add toppings and serve

Topping Options:

  1. Strawberries, blueberries, almonds
  2. Cherries, dark chocolate shavings
  3. Raspberry, lemon, hemp seeds
Tofu Sheet Pan Stir Fry

Tofu Sheet Pan Stir Fry

Tofu Sheet Pan Stir Fry Recipe and How To Video

Elevate your nutrition effortlessly with this sheet pan tofu meal featuring an array of colorful vegetables – red and orange bell peppers, carrots, scallions, and broccoli – alongside extra-firm tofu. Packed with essential vitamins and minerals, this dish provides a plant-based protein boost.

The tamari, garlic, maple syrup, and ginger sauce not only enhances flavor but also provides antioxidants, supporting your body’s natural detoxification processes.

Trust us – this convenient and wholesome dinner time solution is a nutritional powerhouse for promoting overall well-being.

Ingredients:
  • 1 bell pepper, red, chopped
  • 1 bell pepper, orange, chopped
  • 2 large carrots, sliced
  • 2 scallions
  • 1 cup broccoli, chopped
  • 12 oz tofu, extra firm, cubed
  • 2 Tbs tamari or low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 tsp garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp maple syrup
  • 2 tsp ginger, grated
  • 2 tsp olive oil
Directions:

Prep

  1. Preheat oven to 375º
  2. Chop peppers, carrots, green onions, broccoli, and cube drained tofu
  3. Mince garlic and ginger
  4. In a small bowl, mix together tamari, garlic, maple syrup, and ginger

Make

  1. On a lined sheet pan, cook tofu for about 15 minutes
  2. After tofu has cooked a little, add in the veggies
  3. Pour mixed sauce mixture over all veggies and tofu
  4. Bake for about 20 minutes until vegetables are cooked and tofu browns a bit
Notes:

Incorporate other vegetables like cauliflower, green beans, or onions.

Salmon – Three Ways

Salmon – Three Ways

Grilled Salmon with Mango Salsa

Salmon

Ingredients:
  • 1  1/2 lbs salmon
  • 2 Tbs olive oil
  • salt, to taste
  • black pepper, to taste
Directions:

Prep

  1. Heat grill to medium-high heat
  2. Divide salmon into 4 equal filets with skin on

Make

  1. Brush each salmon fillet with 1/2 tablespoon of olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste
  2. Place on the grill, skin side up first (flesh side should be grilled first to avoid early separation from skin)
  3. Grill salmon until firm and browned, about 4 minutes per side (an also be done in a grill pan)
  4. Transfer salmon to a serving platter

Salsa

Ingredients:
  • 2 cups mango, chopped
  • 1/2 cup tomato, chopped
  • 1/2 bell pepper, red, chopped
  • 1/4 cup scallions, minced
  • 1/2 tsp jalapeño pepper, minced
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • 3 Tbs cilantro, fresh, chopped
  • salt, to taste
Directions:

Prep

  1. Dice the mango, tomato, and bell pepper
  2. Mince scallions and jalapeño
  3. Juice lime and finely chop cilantro

Make

  1. Mix all ingredients in a bowl and season with salt
  2. Spoon over warm salmon filets just before serving
Notes:

Other fish options: baked cod or flounder, grilled tuna or halibut

Other fruit options: peaches, nectarines, pineapple

Maple-Mustard Salmon with Glazed Carrots

Ingredients:
  • 2 Tbs oregano, fresh, chopped (or 1 teaspoon dried)
  • 2 Tbs mustard, Dijon
  • 2 Tbs maple syrup
  • 2 Tbs olive oil
  • 1  1/2 lbs salmon, fillets
  • 2 lbs carrots, peeled and cut into strips or rounds
  • 1 onion, sweet, sliced or chopped small
  • salt, to taste
  • pepper, to taste
Directions:

Prep

  1. Preheat oven to 425°F and line baking sheet with parchment paper
  2. Combine oregano, mustard, syrup, and olive oil in a small bowl
  3. Peel and cut carrots and chop the onion

Make

  1. Brush 1/2 mustard-maple syrup mixture evenly over salmon fillets
  2. Toss carrots and onion with remaining dressing in a bowl
  3. Add salmon to the pan and spread vegetables around the salmon in an even layer
  4. Bake at 425°F for 20-30 minutes or until salmon is done and carrots are tender
Notes:

Other protein options: chicken, shrimp, halibut, tempeh

Other vegetable options: parsnips, sweet potatoes, butternut squash, delicata squash

Coconut Lime Salmon with Vegetables

Ingredients:
  • 1/2 cup onion, red, chopped
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, fresh, chopped
  • 1 zucchini, chopped
  • 2 cups spinach, chopped
  • 1/2 bell pepper, red, cut into strips
  • 2 limes for 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 1 Tbs coconut oil
  • 1  1/2 lbs salmon fillets, cut into equal servings
  • 1 cup vegetable broth
  • 1/2 tsp red chili flakes
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk, canned
  • 2 Tbs soy sauce
Directions:

Prep

  1. Chop red onion, cilantro, zucchini, and spinach leaves
  2. Cut pepper into strips
  3. Juice lime

Make

  1. Melt coconut oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat then add salmon filets, skin side up, and sear filets until they remove easily from the skillet – about 5 minutes then remove from skillet
  2. Add onion to sauté pan and cook until soft
  3. Add pepper, zucchini, broth, lime juice, cilantro, and chili flakes to skillet and bring to a boil
  4. Reduce to a simmer and cook for 5 minutes
  5. Add coconut milk and soy sauce then simmer for an additional 5 minutes
  6. Return salmon to skillet and nestle into vegetables
  7. Simmer until fillets are completely cooked through – about another 5-7 minutes then remove from heat
  8. Add chopped spinach to skillet and cover for a few minutes until softened
  9. Serve with extra lime wedges
 Lentil Quinoa Salad with Dill

 Lentil Quinoa Salad with Dill

Ingredients
  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 2 cups water
  • 1  1/2 cups lentils, canned, drained and rinsed
  • 4 scallions, chopped
  • 1/4 cup dill, fresh, chopped
Directions

Prep

  1. Chop scallions and dill

Make

  1. Add quinoa and water to a small saucepot & bring to a boil
  2. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes or until all liquid is absorbed
  3. Remove from heat and fluff with a fork
  4. Add warm cooked quinoa to a mixing bowl with lentils, dill, and scallions
  5. Add enough dressing to coat and serve warm or chilled
Dressing
Ingredients
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 Tbs red wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 clove garlic, minced or pressed
  • 1 Tbs lemon zest
  • salt, to taste
  • black pepper, to taste
Directions

Prep

  1. Mince or press garlic

Make

  1. Add all ingredients to a mason jar with a lid and shake to blend
Notes

Experiment with different combinations of grains, legumes, and herbs! 

 Simple Roasted Cod with Tomatoes

 Simple Roasted Cod with Tomatoes

This cod recipe is filled with delightful herbs to spice up this protein packed dish. Let’s put a freshly herb seasoned spin on your dinner table!

Ingredients
  • 1  1/2 lb cod fillets, thawed
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 qt grape tomatoes, multicolored
  • 4 Tbs olive oil
  • 2 tsp herbes de provence thyme and oregano
  • salt, to taste
  • 1 lemons, sliced
  • pepper, to taste
Directions

Prep

  1. Defrost cod [if not using fresh].
  2. Juice lemon and mince garlic.
  3. Preheat oven to 350°F.

Make

  1. Pat cod fillets dry with a paper towel and place on a sheet pan lined with parchment.
  2. Toss tomatoes with 1 tablespoon of olive oil and garlic then scatter them around the fillets.
  3. Drizzle fish with olive oil.
  4. Sprinkle fish and tomatoes with herbs, salt and pepper.
  5. Squeeze lemon over fish and place lemon slices on top.
  6. Cook for about 20-30 minutes until the fish flakes easily and some of the tomatoes have burst open.
  7. Garnish with parsley and season with more salt to taste.
Chicken Bone Broth Benefits and How To Video

Chicken Bone Broth Benefits and How To Video

Why do we love bone broth? These 3 benefits:

  1. Glycine Content: Bone broth contains the amino acid glycine, which is involved in the synthesis of glutathione, a powerful antioxidant. Glutathione plays a role in the detoxification of certain substances in the liver.
  2. General Nutrient Support: The vitamins, minerals, and amino acids in bone broth may support overall health, including the proper functioning of organs involved in detoxification. However, it’s important to note that a well-balanced and varied diet can provide these nutrients from multiple sources.
  3. Hydration: Staying hydrated is crucial for supporting the body’s natural detoxification processes. Since bone broth is a liquid, it contributes to overall fluid intake, aiding in hydration.

What does the research say about bone broth benefits?

While bone broth is often touted for its health benefits, it’s important to note that the scientific evidence supporting some of these claims is limited, and more research is needed to establish definitive conclusions. That being said, here are some potential benefits of bone broth that are supported by at least some scientific evidence:

  1. Nutrient Content: Bone broth is rich in several nutrients, including collagen, gelatin, amino acids, and minerals. While the exact composition may vary, these elements contribute to the nutritional profile of the broth.
  2. Joint Health: Some studies suggest that collagen supplementation may have positive effects on joint pain and function. Collagen, a major component of bone broth, provides structural support to joints and connective tissues.
  3. Digestive Health: The amino acid glutamine, present in bone broth, is known for its role in maintaining the integrity of the intestinal barrier. This could potentially benefit individuals with certain digestive issues, although more research is needed.
  4. Hydration: Bone broth is a liquid, and staying hydrated is essential for overall health. Consuming broth can contribute to daily fluid intake.
  5. Electrolyte Balance: The electrolytes in bone broth, including sodium, potassium, and chloride, can help maintain electrolyte balance, especially during periods of illness or increased physical activity.
  6. Bone Health: The minerals found in bone broth, such as calcium, phosphorus, and magnesium, are essential for bone health. However, it’s important to note that the concentration of these minerals may not be as high as in other sources.

It’s crucial to emphasize that while these potential benefits exist, more rigorous and comprehensive research is needed to draw firm conclusions. The evidence supporting bone broth’s efficacy for specific health conditions is often preliminary, and individual responses may vary. Furthermore, it’s essential to consider the overall diet and lifestyle, as relying solely on bone broth for nutritional needs may not provide a well-rounded source of essential nutrients.

Raspberry Hemp Overnight Oats

Raspberry Hemp Overnight Oats

Ingredients
  • 1/2 cup Greek yogurt, plain
  • 1 cup oats, rolled gluten free, if needed
  • 1 cup almond milk, unsweetened or milk of choice
  • 2 Tbs chia seeds
  • 1 Tbs maple syrup
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 lime, zested (for 1 tablespoon lime zest)
  • 1 Tbs hemp seeds for garnish
  • 1 cup raspberries, fresh
Directions

Prep

  1. Zest lime for 1 tablespoon of zest.

Make

  1. In a glass jar mix yogurt, oats, milk, chia seeds, maple syrup, vanilla, and lemon zest
  2. Add the top to the jar and shake
  3. Leave in the fridge overnight
  4. Top with hemp seeds and raspberries
What’s the Best Diet? The Ultimate Guide to the Five Most Popular Diets in 2024: What They Are, How They Work, and How They Can Impact Your Health

What’s the Best Diet? The Ultimate Guide to the Five Most Popular Diets in 2024: What They Are, How They Work, and How They Can Impact Your Health

Are you curious about popular diets that everyone is buzzing about? You’ve probably heard of keto, paleo, intermittent fasting, veganism, and the Mediterranean diet. But what exactly are they, and how do they work? And most importantly, are they good for you and your goals? In this article, we will compare these five diets and tell you the pros and cons of each one. We will also give you some tips on how to pick the best diet for you and your lifestyle.

Keto: The Low-Carb, High-Fat Diet

The keto diet is a diet that limits your carbs and emphasizes the addition of more fats. The idea is to put your body into a state of ketosis, where your body burns fat instead of glucose (sugar) for energy. Reaching this state by following the keto diet may help you lose weight fast, as well as improve your blood sugar, inflammation, and brain function [1] [2]. But the keto diet also has some downsides, such as possible nutrient deficiencies, digestive issues, higher cholesterol levels, and a higher risk of kidney stones [1] [2] [3]. These downsides may make keto a risky choice for individuals with diabetes, kidney disease, liver disease, or pregnant or breastfeeding women. 

It’s also important to mention that for many, sticking with this diet long-term is very difficult. It excludes several healthy foods and requires a lot of forethought to stick to such a low-carb diet. This could lead to “yo-yo dieting,” and we know that rapid weight loss fluctuations are associated with increased mortality. 

There are several health conditions for which keto is absolutely contraindicated, such as Porphyria and genetic deficiencies like fatty acid beta-oxidation defects. [18] Other contexts haven’t had much, if any, keto research, and caution is warranted, such as with pregnancy and eating disorders.

Paleo: The Ancient Diet

The Paleo diet is a nutritional approach that mimics the dietary patterns of our ancestors during the Paleolithic era before modern farming practices. This diet promotes the consumption of whole foods like meat, fish, eggs, nuts, seeds, fruits, and vegetables and avoids grains, beans, and dairy while limiting refined sugars, processed foods, and oils. This way of eating can be very satiating due to the hunger-crushing properties of the foods you will be eating (protein, fiber, fats).

A paleo eating pattern may help you lose weight, lower your blood pressure and cholesterol, reduce inflammation, and prevent chronic diseases [4] [5]. In general, the paleo diet can be a good option for people with allergies or intolerances to certain foods. Despite limiting grains, beans and dairy, it can still be a very Well Balanced diet. However, it also has some drawbacks to be aware of. The paleo diet’s strict emphasis on whole foods can make it restrictive, expensive, difficult to follow in social situations, and lacking in some nutrients such as calcium and vitamin D [4] [5] [6].

Intermittent Fasting: The Time-Restricted Diet

Intermittent fasting is a diet that changes when you eat rather than what you eat. Individuals following this dietary plan alternate between periods of fasting and eating. There are different ways to do intermittent fasting, such as eating within an 8-hour window every day (16/8), eating normally for 5 days and cutting calories to 500-600 on 2 days (5:2), or fasting every other day (alternate-day).

Like other diets, intermittent fasting can lead to weight loss from eating fewer calories. It can also improve blood sugar levels, insulin sensitivity, inflammation markers, and brain health [7] [8]. On the other hand, intermittent fasting can also have some negative effects that make it risky for people with diabetes, low blood pressure, eating disorders, and pregnant/breastfeeding women. These negative effects include intense hunger pangs, headaches, fatigue, irritability, mood swings, and binge eating [7] [8] [9].

Vegan: The Plant-Only Diet

The vegan diet excludes all animal products like meat, fish, eggs, dairy, honey, and gelatin. The vegan diet can improve your health, lowering your chance of getting heart disease, diabetes, obesity, and some cancers. Veganism can also help you lose weight and improve your digestion, and it has the added bonus of protecting the environment [10] [11] [12].

The vegan diet is not without its challenges, though. Many individuals following this diet struggle to get enough protein, iron, calcium, vitamin B12, and other nutrients that are primarily found in animal foods [10] [11] [13]. In some places or situations where vegan food is hard to find or not available, you may find the vegan diet too difficult to follow. Going vegan requires careful planning, supplements, and learning to avoid potential problems or deficiencies.

Mediterranean: The Healthy and Tasty Diet

Focusing on whole, plant foods, the Mediterranean diet is based on the traditional eating patterns of people living in countries around the Mediterranean Sea, such as Greece, Italy, and Spain. The Mediterranean diet emphasizes consuming fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans, and nuts, with some fish, poultry, eggs, and dairy products. It also promotes healthy fats such as olive oil and nuts while limiting red meat, processed foods, added sugar, and salt. The Well Balanced approach is most in line with this way of eating.

The Mediterranean diet is widely known as one of the best diets in the world, as it can lower your risk of heart disease, stroke, diabetes, obesity, and dementia [14] [15] [16]. It can also help you lose weight, improve your mood, and enhance your longevity [14] [15] [16]. The Mediterranean diet is easy to follow and adapt to different cuisines and tastes.

How to Choose the Best Diet for You

As you can see, there is no one-size-fits-all diet that is guaranteed to work for every individual. Each diet has its benefits and drawbacks, and the best diet for you depends on your goals, needs, and preferences.

Before committing to a diet, check out these tips to help you choose the best for you:

Talk to your doctor and a registered dietitian before starting any new diet, especially if you have any health issues or take any medicines. Your doctor can help you check your health status and advise against any contraindications to a diet you may be considering. A registered dietitian can further assist you in deciding what nutrition plan is appropriate, create sensible action steps, and help you monitor and continue your progress. 

Consider your lifestyle and preferences. Choose a diet that fits your schedule, budget, culture, and taste buds. A diet that is too restrictive or incompatible with your lifestyle will be hard to stick to and may cause more harm than good.

Do your research and educate yourself. Learn about the pros and cons of each diet, the science behind them, and the possible risks and benefits to your health. Be sure to look for reputable sources of information, such as peer-reviewed journals, government websites, or registered dietitians. Avoid falling for fad diets or miracle claims that sound too good to be true.

Experiment and find what works for you! You don’t have to follow a single diet strictly or forever. You can try different approaches and see how they affect your weight, health, and well-being. Consider mixing and matching elements from different diets to create your own personalized plan. One of our dietitians can help you with this process until you have a very individualized plan. The most important thing is to find a beneficial diet you enjoy and can sustain long-term.

In Summary

Many popular diets today claim to help you lose weight, improve your health, or achieve other goals. However, not all diets are created equal; some may be more suitable for you than others. The keto diet, the paleo diet, intermittent fasting, the vegan diet, and the Mediterranean diet are some of the most popular diets today, and each one has its pros and cons. To choose the best diet for you, you should consult your doctor, meet with a dietitian, consider your lifestyle and preferences, do your research, and experiment with different options. Finally, remember that the best diet is the one that you can stick to and that makes you feel truly good!

Sources:

[1] Masood W et al., Ketogenic Diet – StatPearls – NCBI Bookshelf https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK499830/

[2] Crosby L et al., Ketogenic Diets and Chronic Disease: Weighing the Benefits Against the Risks https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fnut.2021.702802/full

[3] Diet Review: Ketogenic Diet for Weight Loss | The Nutrition Source | Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/healthy-weight/diet-reviews/ketogenic-diet/

[4] Manheimer EW et al., Paleolithic nutrition for metabolic syndrome: systematic review and meta-analysis https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26269362/

[5] Masharani U et al., Metabolic and physiologic effects from consuming a hunter-gatherer (Paleolithic)-type diet in type 2 diabetes https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25828624/

[6] Genoni A et al., Long-term Paleolithic diet is associated with lower resistant starch intake, different gut microbiota composition and increased serum TMAO concentrations https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31433748/

[7] de Cabo R et al., Effects of Intermittent Fasting on Health, Aging, and Disease https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31881139/

[8] Antoni R et al., The Effects of Intermittent Fasting on Human and Animal Health: A Systematic Review https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26374764/

[9] Cioffi I et al., Intermittent versus continuous energy restriction on weight loss and cardiometabolic outcomes: a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/29105901/

[10] Melina V et al., Position of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics: Vegetarian Diets https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/27886704/

[11] Dinu M et al., Vegetarian, vegan diets and multiple health outcomes: a systematic review with meta-analysis of observational studies https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26853916/

[12] Orlich MJ et al., Vegetarian dietary patterns and mortality in Adventist Health Study 2 https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/23836264/

[13] Rogerson D, Vegan diets: practical advice for athletes and exercisers https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28924423/

[14] Sofi F et al., Adherence to Mediterranean diet and health status: meta-analysis https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/18786971/

[15] Singh B et al., Mediterranean Diet, Its Components, and Cardiovascular Disease https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30779631/

[16] Lourida I et al., Mediterranean diet, cognitive function, and dementia: a systematic review https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/23850343/

[17] Romaguera D et al., Mediterranean dietary patterns and prospective weight change in participants of the EPIC-PANACEA project https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/20810976/

[18] Kossoff EH, et al., Optimal clinical management of children receiving dietary therapies for epilepsy: Updated recommendations of the International Ketogenic Diet Study Group https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/29881797/